St Joseph’s High Dependency Unit

Enveloped by rolling hills and lush vegetation, St. Joseph’s Mission Hospital is situated in Nguldi, just outside Blantyre.

The hospital was founded in 1953, by the Catholic Congregation of Daughters of Wisdom Sisters.

The Mission Hospitals complement government efforts in the health sector, through health units scattered across the Archdiocese, especially in rural areas.

With dwindling donations from church congregations in Europe and little support from the government health sector in Malawi, mission hospitals are facing ever-increasing challenges in being able to afford to purchase equipment, medical supplies and to maintain their buildings.

Responding to a request from the hospital, AMECA decided to renovate and equip the HDU, which was poorly equipped and badly in need of repair. A High Dependency Unit (or HDU) provides a level of care intermediate between an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and general ward care. Patients in HDU are at a very high risk of developing complications if poorly managed; a facility providing close monitoring, immediate resuscitation and management of the critically ill, can prevent needless deaths seen in so many hospitals.

Clinical staff advised on their requirements, which were translated into architect plans and S R Nicholas were engaged to carry out the renovations which included new flooring, re-wiring and total refurbishment.

AMECA sourced equipment at minimal cost from Medic Foundation, based in Apeldoorn, Holland. Medic is a truly charitable enterprise, run by volunteers with a real expertise in technology and healthcare.

The HDU was officially opened at the end of 2018.

As with so many hospitals in Malawi, there is a need to respond to changing circumstances and challenges as they arise.

Due to the Covid pandemic, the HDU was used for Covid patients.

Recently, the HDU is being temporarily used for paediatric patients, while the paediatric ward is being rennovated.